Outsourced investments are one of the fastest-growing categories in the financial advisory world. Perched between the asset custodian and the financial advisor, these (mostly) turnkey asset management programs can handle all or a portion of their investing, technology and fiduciary duties.

Advocates of using these TAMPs point to how it's better for the advisor because it frees up more time to spend with clients and prospects. It's also better for clients because the duties are being handled by specialized professionals who benefit from economies of scale.

Skeptics say that it adds a layer of cost and takes away an element of control from the advisors in executing according to a client's financial plan.

Dean Zayed: This is the first big deal we're doing under the AmeriLife banner ... [and] there's no other opportunity as special as this is given the like-mindedness of the two companies.

Thomas H. Lee gets second bite at an advice roll-up in backing Brookstone's buy of Jason Wenk's $3-billion TAMP -- with Altruist tie-in to be determined

The Boston-based private equity giant, famed for Hightower purchase, is now a leader in what appears to be an emerging insurance TAMP game.

July 16, 2020 — 4:03 AM by Oisin Breen

Brooke's Note: What this insurance TAMP deal and Orion's Brinker deal tell me is this: It's easier (at least en masse) to teach thousands of old dogs -- even insurance agents -- new tricks (like selling fee-based portfolios) than it is to teach a bunch of young dogs from ...

Friends for a decade, Runik Mehrotra and Samir Vasavada have raised $18 million in VC funds, largely on the promise that they can take on -- and beat -- current B2B robos like Betterment.

Sequoia Capital bet and won big on FutureAdvisor; now it's wagering $14.5 million on Vise and its 'extreme value proposition' for RIAs

The legendary VC sold FA to BlackRock for $150 million , cooled its heels, then re-upped in Robo 2.0 wave with TD, Schwab, Riskalyze and Jon Xu playing roles

July 6, 2020 — 7:16 PM by Oisin Breen

Brooke's Note: Recently I heard an incredible podcast (by Stephen Chen CEO of NewRetirement interviewing Eric Brewer and Ken Goldberg) about just how limited artificial intelligence is compared to human intelligence. The fact that Watson can beat Fischer in chess is a false indicator. A car, ...

Eric Clarke: We have the scale now we need to effectively compete in a number of areas to help us win enterprise opportunities.

In a deal wired by a 'Tony,' Orion leaps to the top TAMP tier, with $42 billion and $1 trillion-plus of RIA portfolios, which may make it more lethal to rivals

At the urging of Genstar's Tony Salewski, the Omaha organization will pay an estimated $600 million for Brinker. In the process, Orion becomes a 1,000-employee firm-- one notch below No. 3 AssetMark on the TAMP list

June 30, 2020 — 2:24 AM by Oisin Breen

Brooke's Note: I spent the better part of Monday editing and chopping down this RIA novella but that hardly means it's short or gutted of intrigue. So many RIA storylines of decades standing converge on this deal. But what's apparent is that the dealmakers don't see it ...

Jonathan Pincus is a Northern Trust ringer with a track record.

With $4 million VC raise fresh in hand, SMArtX takes next step to shed Black Diamond shadow by hiring a president/COO who casts his own

.Jonathan Pincus took overseen assets at Northern Trust from $3 billion to $70 billion at his Chicago firm and learned about SMartX after in his old role

May 22, 2020 — 9:36 PM by Oisin Breen

Brooke's Note: Again and again we see it. The investment management business isn't dead. It just needs to be sold with more aids to financial advice baked in. SMArtX smartly learned from RIAs and now it'll take its game -- with new software and now a ...

Evan Rapoport: We are and will continue to be partners of SS&C Advent and Black Diamond ... We [just] didn't fully grasp three and five years ago how valuable our back-end technology is.

After riding Black Diamond's coattails from near zero to $2 billion of AUM, SMArtX raises $4 million to compete as a 'Vestmark'-model firm

The Jacksonville RIA software firm gave the Palm Beach, Fla. fund manager a shot at the fast-track that worked -- but now the three-year contract is almost up

March 20, 2020 — 7:10 AM by Oisin Breen

Black Diamond and SMArtX needed each other in 2017. They signed an exclusive contract and... BOOM!

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Kelly Brewster: There are so many things that we can make available that Envestnet may never even consider touching!

Buckingham Strategic Wealth and Private Ocean hire startup Flourish as agent of FDIC-insured cash in rebuff to more established players like MaxMyInterest

Flourish sees a window to contest the incumbents with 'easy button' software that lures Greg Friedman's and Adam Birenbaum's RIAs, which combine for nearly $55 billion of AUM

February 11, 2020 — 11:37 PM by Oisin Breen

Brooke's Note: We are hard at work unpacking the report from McKinsey about what the RIA business will look like in 2030 for an upcoming article. I'm not giving away too much to say that one mega-observation in the report is that wealth management and ...

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Bill Crager has another issue on his plate, the possible sale of Envestnet or Yodlee.

Envestnet, caught in speculative web over possible Yodlee spinoff--or sale of company, itself--has Wall Street scrambling to buy on the rumor

'Large private-equity firms, in particular, are said to be interested,' Barron's reports, but who's driving the conversation--the company, news media or speculators?

February 3, 2020 — 8:26 PM by Keith Girard

Brooke's Note: Envestnet went public at $9 a share in 2010 to gain access to public markets that it could tap to fund the roll-up of a series of mostly software companies to create a one-stop shop of investments and technology for broker-dealers and their ...

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Eric Clarke: '[I'm] CEO of the business, [so] I feel like I'd have a very good say in [any] transition, what those next steps would be and plan to be highly involved and engaged in that process ... [with a sale] most likely in my opinion to another financial sponsor, another private equity firm.

What exactly to make of the Barron's article about Orion being listed for sale by Raymond James for $1.8 billion -- and how it boils down to 'when', not if

Orion CEO is insists no formal action is taking place but majority stakeholder, TA Associates, declines to back him up, Barron's isn't backing down and Orion admits its five-year anniversary with TA marks a sell-by date.

January 18, 2020 — 2:03 AM by Oisin Breen

Brooke's Note: Little effort was spared in writing this article -- a burden mostly carried by Oisin -- but with me very much involved, too. The impetus of our effort derives from how consequential Orion Advisor Solutions and the Clarke family are to the RIA business. ...

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Tim Buckley: We want to see active have a resurgence, but the only way it will happen is if pricing comes down.

Into the PIMCO void, Vanguard re-applies itself to active fixed-income funds and Bond Kings get a bitter taste of what the Peter Lynches of yesteryear learned the hard way

The Malvern, Pa. giant has only 24% of assets invested in bonds but nearly 40% of its portfolio staff are bond-directed as it seeks to exploit a world of high fees driven by fiefdoms and petty monarchs.

January 3, 2020 — 1:33 AM by Oisin Breen

Brooke's Note: This week Barron's rightly went whole hog in featuring Vanguard and its CEO, Tim Buckley. It just took a questionable angle -- namely that Vanguard is in survival mode now that the rest of the investment industry is competing with it on price. ...

Laura Levesque: Fee pressures are considerable but defined contribution plans may pick up the slack.

The super-TAMP 'OCIO' category suddenly, finally looks mortal in 2019, says Cerulli report, but modest reinvention and price cuts could give it a new run

The outsourced chief investment officer industry exploded to almost $2 trillion globally and $1.4 trillion in the US, by striking a balance between TAMPs and consultants that propelled 20% growth without much fee pressure, the Boston consultant shows.

December 23, 2019 — 6:22 PM by Oisin Breen

Brooke's Note: One sure sign of fee compression is the expansion of acronym use. Top of that list is OCIO, which provided the investments business a rare shelter from the storm of assets running down the drain. Now just as outsourced chief investment officers are becoming ...

Martin Flanagan: Invesco has a long history of providing advisors with the tools and digital solutions they need ... through a broad range of active, passive and alternative capabilities.

Invesco snaps up RedBlack, not long after buying Portfolio Pathways and a few years after its Jemstep acquisition

The $1.3-trillion AUM Atlanta-based asset manager promises a 'digital' future, but skeptics question how it can work

December 16, 2019 — 10:56 PM by Oisin Breen

Brooke's Note: Want a retirement plan? Start an RIA software firm, get a few RIAs to sign on, then put up a for-sale sign. RedBlack was one of the few remaining independent RIA software firms. Now it's not. The one head-scratcher in this build-and-flip, nest-egg play ...

Bill Crager: It's very hard to understand what happened. The word shocked breathtaking stunned don't describe it.

Interim CEO Bill Crager no-comments sale rumors but affirms 'leadership clarification' is coming soon as Envestnet quickly converts 100 PortfolioCenter users to Tamarac

In first quarterly meeting since Jud Bergman's death, wingman Crager had good news that includes major deal with Equifax

November 14, 2019 — 11:31 PM by Brooke Southall

Brooke's Note: It had to be the most tragedy-freighted investor call that I have ever known. Jud Bergman meant so much to so many people, but perhaps not more than he meant to his Envestnet co-founder, Bill Crager, aside from Bergman's own family. Crager, who was charged ...

Walt Bettinger: I'd suggest it will play an important role in our company's future both on the retail side and potentially on the RIA channel.

Charles Schwab & Co. brings 'start-up'-style disruption to the $20 trillion mutual fund industry by zeroing out free fractional-share trade ticket charges

'We are on the offense at Schwab,' says San Francisco-based CEO Walt Bettinger, who may be leaving his own firm's margins undefended as he hands free fractional shares to friction-free blaze of disruption.

October 22, 2019 — 3:48 AM by Oisin Breen

Brooke's Note: You can be sure Chuck Schwab long since made a pact with himself that he would not fall into the trap he set for Wall Street. Yet arguably the Schwab chairman and founder is feeling the stabbing pain of Innovator's Dilemma as discount brokers get out-innovated ...

Charles Goldman: In 2018, advisers received 67% of their total revenue from fees, up from 40% in 2013

Fresh off IPO, AssetMark bumps Charles Goldman's pay 47%, but the AssetMark CEO had good news for his employers, too

After 2018 slowed a bit, the Concord, Calif.-based firm's growth rate picked up in first six months of 2019 and the firm has its star CEO locked up now for three years

August 29, 2019 — 4:33 PM by By Lisa Shidler

Brooke's Note: "Bulls make money, bears make money, pigs get slaughtered," goes the old Wall Street maxim. AssetMark and Charles Goldman seem to have steered well clear of the pig sty with a compensation deal sure to reward a CEO for a job well done and ...

Dean Zayed: 'I’ve got lots of skin in the game. This isn’t an exit strategy.'.

AmeriLife just bought a $2.7-billion TAMP based on growing belief pre-packaged RIA services and commission-sold insurance can be sold out of the same briefcase

The Clearwater, Fla. insurance marketer bought Brookstone Capital Management with faith that insurance agents can moonlight as part-time RIAs

August 22, 2019 — 5:52 PM by By Lisa Shidler

Brooke's Note: The idea of having a turnkey asset management program that turns non-wealth managers into wealth managers is not entirely new. The most famous is BAM Advisor Services which turns accountants into advisors and has about $15 billion of AUM to show for it. Brookstone is ...

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